Title - 'B-Sides And Confessions, Vol. 2' (Lotus Nile)
Artist - Jeff Black
Jeff Black is a well-respected American singer-songwriter originally from Kansas City, Missouri and now based in Nashville, Tennessee. His musical musings have been described - in some great depth by one source - as impressionistic songs that are smart without forgetting the emotional undercurrent. And that cannot be nearer the truth.
The follow-up to 2003's B-Sides And Confessions, Vol. One (of course), Volume Two brings us another intimate, soulful and thoughtful collection of stripped-down music.
This new chapter of moving and soulful songs from an incredible storyteller kicks off with the hard guitar blues of 'All Right Now,' before heading into the sedate banjo politeness of 'Molly Rose' and the more self-affirmed 'Avalon.'
These superbly executed and well-crafted tunes continue onwards with 'Impala,' before giving us the more banjo-themed 'Alice Carry' and then the stoic 'Days On End.'
Black's most appealing asset is his soulful, experienced voice with enough of Tom Waits' grit to establish credibility. Which he brings to the fore on 'Miss Me,' which Black follows up with the upbeat 'An Evil Lesson is Soon Learned' and the raw 'Good Old Days.'
As with Volume One, Volume Two is filled with rare treasures that linger long after the music stops. None more so than the three that bring the album to a close: the close-to-my-heart Randy Newmanesque 'True Love Never Let Me Down,' the stunning 'Remain,' and the quietly-handsome, deep emotional landscape of 'Sunday Falling.'